Weight: 191 lbs.
High school: Alliance (OH) Marlington
Jersey number: #25
Last year: I ranked Thomas #33 and said he would be Michigan's nickel corner. He made 7 tackles and blocked 1 punt.
Thomas was an Army All-American, enrolled early in January 2013, got lots of hype, and was pegged as the starting slot corner going into the fall. In the season opener again Central Michigan, he won the Brandon Herron Award, which is given out once every today to reward a guy who plays very well in a season opener only to fall off the face of the planet. Thomas made brief appearances for the rest of the season, but fellow freshman defensive backs Jourdan Lewis and Channing Stribling kept him off the field while Blake Countess would move into the slot in nickel situations.
Brady Hoke said this off-season that they would be moving Thomas to safety and letting him concentrate on one position, which indicates that things were moving a little too quickly for him last year. Indications are that he has been getting reps at free safety, which scares me in much the same way as it did with the now departed Josh Furman - anytime you move a guy back in the defense, bad things are likely to happen. Thomas, a high school linebacker, should be playing nickel corner or in the box as a safety. The starting free safety will be Jarrod Wilson, but the strong safety situation is unsettled - Delano Hill appears to be the front-runner with Jeremy Clark as another option. I place Thomas here because he could play either safety position, he could help out at nickel corner if there's a need, and he can also be a valuable asset on special teams with his speed, athleticism, and physicality. I believe his physical assets are unmatched by any defensive back on the team besides Jabrill Peppers, but it remains to be see how exactly he fits.
Prediction: Backup safety, special teams ace